Granting of a licence for the commercial arms trade

The handling of weapons or ammunition generally requires a permit.

Authorisation to acquire, distribute or transfer firearms or ammunition on a commercial or independent basis within the framework of an economic undertaking shall be granted by the competent authority. It may be limited to certain types of firearms and ammunition.

An arms trading book must be kept showing the type and quantity of firearms, their origin and whereabouts.

  • Certificate of expertise
  • Certificate issued by the competent judicial or administrative authority of the country of origin or country from which the foreign national comes
  • Confirmation of the home authority
  • Proof of commercial establishment, business premises
  • If applicable, a copy of an arms trade permit that has already been issued
  • Curriculum vitae


  • Completion of the age of 18
  • Reliability
    • The required reliability presupposes above all that there is no criminal record.
  • personal suitability
    • For example, the required personal aptitude is not possessed by those persons for whom facts justify the assumption that they are incapacitated, dependent on alcohol or mentally ill.
  • Expertise
    • If necessary, the necessary proof of expertise in the most important regulations on weapons law and fire law, on the type, construction and handling of common firearms and ammunition can be obtained by means of an examination at the Hanover Chamber of Industry and Commerce.
    • The specialist knowledge is considered to be given if the requirements for the registration of a gunsmith's business in the craft register are met.
  • Proof of a need
    • The need (a reasonable reason) may arise from a particularly recognisable personal or economic interest, for example as an arms dealer.
  • Professionalism or economic enterprise
    • A permit is only granted if the arms trade is carried out commercially or independently within the framework of an economic enterprise.
  • Hanover Chamber of Industry and Commerce


In the case of gunsmiths registered in the register of craftsmen, the weapons manufacturing permit includes the permit to trade in arms.

Related Links

  • § 21 Weapons Act (WaffG)
  • § 22 Weapons Act (WaffG)
  • Cost Ordinance to the Weapons Act (WaffKostV)

The competent body shall verify that the applicant has the necessary reliability. To this end, it obtains information from the Federal Central Register and the Public Prosecutor's Office Register of Proceedings as well as an opinion from the local police station. Proof of personal suitability, expertise, need and professionalism or economic enterprise must be provided by yourself.

If there are concerns about personal suitability, the competent authority has the option of requesting an official or specialist medical certificate or a specialist psychological certificate of mental or physical fitness.

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Lower Saxony Ministry of Economic Affairs, Labour and Transport

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